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Overview to Auckland: Travel Guide and Tourist Information

Auckland

The city of Auckland, currently home to about a third of New Zealand's population, is a wonderfully diverse and multicultural city. For centuries, travelers – and now backpackers – from around the world have flocked to the Hauraki Gulf, drawn by the area’s outstanding beauty.

At the heart of the city lies Aotea Square, a very relaxed place to take in the warm weather, it contains some beautiful older buildings. Its central location makes it ideal as a starting point for travelers to head off on tours around the city.

Not far from the square is the impressive 18th century Auckland Art Gallery, which contains one of the largest collections of art in the country. The Auckland Museum, home to the world's largest collection of Polynesian artifacts, is another of the city’s cultural attractions.

The busy center is complemented by the tranquility offered by the gardens of Auckland, which are dotted around the city. The Auckland Domain is a large park in the heart of the city which includes a variety of flora and fauna for visitors and locals alike to enjoy.

Right across the board, Auckland is a remarkably scenic city. For wonderful panoramic views of the city, travelers can take a walk up either Mount Eden or One Tree Hill, both of which were formed from the long-extinct volcanoes that surround the city.

Mount Eden is perhaps the more spectacular of the two, providing incredible views out to the islands which seem to float just off the shore. Eden’s also home to the pretty Eden Gardens Park.

On the west coast of the island, just 30 minutes from Auckland's business district, fantastic, black sand beaches line the coast. Wonderful surfing conditions also prevail at places like Karekare Beach.

Not far inland are swathes of rainforest, and the stunning Karekare Falls, which provide visitors with a stunning tropical vision. Out to sea, the rugged and tranquil terrain of Great Barrier Island, boasts a variety of activities such as mountain biking and sea-kayaking.

Auckland’s surroundings, much like the rest of the North Island (and indeed New Zealand in general), offers a glimpse of how the island must have appeared to the first Europeans who arrived in the area: untouched, unspoilt and beguilingly beautiful.


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